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E-mail: info@ambergh.com
Phone/fax: +46 8 612 23 30

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Student testimonial: Steve E.



Total average score:
971f2a 92%
From:UK
Time in Odessa: 2 weeks
Tuition:Group course (20 lessons/week)
Accommodation:Family

Comments:
Odessa is a good place to study Russian. Everyone speaks Russian there. Although many signs are in Ukrainian you hardly ever hear anyone speaking Ukrainian on the street. The centre of the city is really lovely, very European in feeling and the inhabitants are perjhaps friendlier than in Moscow or St Petersburg. Traffic is chaotic. Careful when crossing the street, even at pedestrian crossings. Public transport can take some getting used to but is very cheap. Trolley buses and trams cost 50 Kopeks. You can take minibuses, called marshrutkas, they cost 1 grivnya 25. They have a fixed route but you can get on and off anywhere. You need to warn the driver in plenty of time where you want to get off and pay on exiting. You can also flag down a car in the street by putting out your hand, palm down. Tell the driver where you want to go and negociate a price. Should never be more than 30-40 grivnya. This is generally quite safe but don't hire a car with more than one person in it. Avoid using the taxis in the centre. They will rip you off. Main tourist sights are the Potemkin Steps and the catacombs. There are several beaches, not the prettiest or cleanest in the world but the sea is warm and the sun shines 300 days a year. Delfin beach is generally less crowded than the better known Arcadia. Internet cafes are few and far. There are two on the university campus, cost 3 grivna per hour but tend to be crowded. There is another not far from the campus called Matritsa and in the centre there is one near Sobornaya Ploshchad. There are plenty of places to change money. $1 = 5 grivnya in Aug 2007 Warning: Although you do not need a visa you should always carry your passport or at least a photocopy. The police often stop foreigners especially at night. If they stop you and you have no ID they may want to take you to police station until you can prove your ID. Or they may try to 'fine' you, ie take a bribe. In this case call your host family or the university director. As a last resort pay the 'fine' but no more than 50 grivnya. Get a Ukrainian SIM card for your mobile and make sure you have the phone number of your host and the director.

Meeting at the airport, bus or railway station: 5/5

Accommodation: 5/5
The host mother and daughter were welcoming and during our chats very informative about life in Odessa. They provided dinner when I wanted it and did laundry at extra cost. 4$ per meal, 2$ for laundry.

Favourite night club/restaurant/pub:
Cafeteria at the Natalka shopping centre opposite the university. Cheap but quality varied. Restaurant (no apparent name) on 9 April Square (near to accommodation) served nice shashliki although service was indifferent. Steakhouse on Deribasovskaya St (main street in centre) very nice food and good service. A little more expensive than average Ukrainian restaurant but not by Western European standards. Bar on top floor of shopping centre on 9 April Square is quite a nice place to hang out. Arcadia, many bars and clubs open throughout night. Bars in centre of town close early, at around 11, even at the weekend (apart from the Irish bar!).

What would you like to improve?
Maybe less emphasis on traditional teaching methods (although there is a place for these in moderation) and more communicative activities. But generally I was happy with all aspects of my stay in Odessa.

How did you find out about AMBergh?
Internet search.

Reason for your studies:
General interest in Russian language and culture.

Read more about studying Russian in Odessa »

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AMBergh Education, Solna Torg 19, SE-171 45 Stockholm, Solna, Sweden     Phone/fax: +46 8 612 23 30     E-mail: info@ambergh.com
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